Party at Lan-ting

Shiyan Zhang, 1991 (SPARC). Mural on the exterior Chinatown Public Library, Yale and College streets. Chinatown, Los Angeles.

From the mural: The mural depicts the famous calligrapher Wang Xi Zhi (321-379) from the Jin dynasty, drinking wine and writing poems with his friends when he was forty-seven, hosting a party at Lan-ting, Kuai Ji. At this party, Wang Xi Zhi wrote the famous "Preface to the Collections of Poems at Lan-ting" whose calligraphy has since been highly praised, admired and imiated by all the calligraphers of the coming generations. Around one thousand and seven hundred years ago, the Chinese characters were in the transitional period from the ancient to the modern style. Wang Xi Zhi with his great talents and hard training laid the foundation for the development of the modern Chinese calligraphy. He is regarded by the later generations as the great master and forerunner of the modern Chinese calligraphy who bridged the two different stages in the development of Chinese calligraphy.

Artist: Shi Yan Zhang; Assistants: Celia Ko, De Qing Wang, Jack Wu II, Anthony Mendoza. Sponsored by the Social and Public Art Resource center and made possible through a contract with the Cultural Affairs Department, City of Los Angeles, Neighborhood Pride; Great Walls Unlimited. 1990-1991.

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